At Madrona last February, I saw Cat Bordhi and she told me she had come up with a brand new kind of heel, and that she thought I would like it. I asked her some questions, and she told me it was a variation on a short row heel, and I was skeptical to say the least.
See, I hate short row heels. I hate the little holes, and I know there are ways to get rid of them, but it’s not worth it because the second thing I hate about them is that they don’t fit my feet well at all.
I have rather odd feet. They’re very small – by length I should wear a US size 5.5 to 6 shoe, but I usually end up going a bit bigger because my feet are also tall. Not wide, if I try on a shoe like a Mary Jane or similar style that doesn’t go over the top of my foot, I can fit into a 6 no problem – it’s just that I can’t close the straps. (You can ask Shannon, we went to the Fluevog store after Sock Summit and she watched me try on 3 pairs of shoes that fit great if I left the straps hanging wide open.) Perhaps because of this tallness, or perhaps for other reasons, the distance diagonally from the back of my heel around the front of my foot is very large compared to the circumference of my foot (12″ compared to 8″) – thus short row heels are not a good option.
But enough about me. I saw Cat again at Sock Summit, after she had released her Cat’s Sweet Tomato Heel Socks ebook. She told me about the heel again, and I decided to try it.
Why? Well, Cat is a genius of crazy sock construction, and she looked at my feet and told me she thought it would work, and promised me that there would be no holes. Plus, because I am an *ahem* rather experienced sock knitter, she said I would probably be able to figure it out just from the YouTube Video.
And so… I did. Really, what did I have to lose?
Pattern: my plain sock recipe with Cat’s Sweet Tomato Heel
Yarn: Patons Stretch Socks in Cherry Sours
I cast on shortly after Sock Summit and carried them around in my bag for in between knitting, so it took quite a while to finish them. Plus I couldn’t tell you all about them until I wore them!
So here’s the verdict. There are a couple little issues:
1. The back of the ankle is slightly baggy, but nothing to interfere with wear, and I know Cat has many variations and tweaks in her book, which I didn’t use because I just made the most basic version. This is really a very minor issue.
2. The foot is slightly too long, but that is completely my error as I wasn’t sure where to measure from to figure out when to start the toe, and I didn’t try them on. (bad knitter!)
3. Though the first pick ups of the wraps look beautiful, somehow I didn’t do them quite the same the second time around and they look slightly less beautiful (also completely a user error), but they’re still much better than those awful short row holes!
Overall, they fit very well and I think they’d be an excellent option for me if I ever knit toe-up socks again. 😉
And a little about the yarn, since I hadn’t used it before. It’s a nice cotton/wool blend and though it was a little splitty, it wasn’t bad to work with. The finished feel is really nice! Also it was dirt cheap – I threw it in my cart when ordering my rotary mat from Joann’s because it bumped me over the limit and was cheaper than paying shipping.